0

Artistic capacity is one of human’s components probably right from birth.

In IELTS exam, is it correct to use presumably instead of probably to paraphrase this sentence? As probably is bit stronger than presumably, I think it might be wrong!

1
  • one of a human being's traits. Human beings don't have components. The sentence seems odd, to say the least. Did you write the sentence or did "they"?
    – Lambie
    Aug 1, 2021 at 15:35

2 Answers 2

1

Yes - you could use 'presumably', 'probably', 'perhaps', or 'likely' in this context and the meaning would be similar - that you are making an assertion you believe to be likely.

You might consider using "possibly", which is less assertive. Use this if you are open to it being true but don't want to assert that you think it is.

Your placement of the word is not correct, however - and there are other issues with your sentence I will adjust for.

Artistic capacity is one of human’s components probably right from birth.

It isn't logical to assert that something is, and then add 'probably'. You need to decide if you are adding the caveat to the entire statement (ie what you are saying is only probably true) or just to the element about it being a capacity from birth.

Example:

  • Artistic capacity is probably a component of humans, right from birth.

This would mean that your entire statement is only probably true.

  • Artistic capacity is a component of humans, probably right from birth.

Adding a comma makes the statement about it being present from birth a separate clause, and so only this statement is 'probably' true.

1

The two words mean quite different things, though they sometimes have similar implications. To say that artistic capacity is probably present at birth is merely to say that this hypothesis is likely to be true, and it says nothing about any evidence. To say that artistic capacity is presumably present at birth would be to say that the hypothesis may be accepted as true, usually because there is little evidence to show that it is false even if there is little evidence to show it is true.

If the statement was made by a researcher reporting on an investigation of whether artistic capacity was present at birth, the report would be expected to present data supporting the hypothesis, and the word "probably" would be used if the data was not conclusive. The author would avoid the word "presumably" because it often indicates that the statement should be accepted even though there is not enough data.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .